Picket over Cape Times editor’s replacement

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A protest against the alleged removal of Alide Dasnois as Cape Times editor was hijacked by groups calling for media transformation. Photo: Michael Walker

Cape Town - The Right2Know Campaign says it and other civil society organisations will hold a picket outside Newspaper House in St George’s Mall on Tuesday to protest against the replacement of Cape Times editor Alide Dasnois.

In a statement, the campaign said that events at the Cape Times “set a worrying precedent” that threatened the editorial independence of newspapers.

Independent News and Media SA (INMSA), owned by Sekunjalo Investments, has a number of titles, including the Cape Times.

Dasnois was offered a transfer by the top executives in the company on Friday, December 6, and her replacement, Gasant Abarder, was announced on Sunday, December 8. Abarder took up the position the following day.

INMSA chairman Dr Iqbal Survé said Dasnois had been offered redeployment to another editorial position and had taken a month’s leave to consider her options. They await word from her.

Dasnois told the media she considered herself unfairly treated by the company and was considering legal action.

The SA Centre for Pen International said it ”has the impression that the new owner has not yet comprehended the treasured and universal concept of editorial independence”.

“The SA Pen aligns itself with any considered move to help restore the editorial independence of the Cape Times and the job security of journalists in the INMSA group,” it said.

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